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Slide courtesy of Chile Hardware
Triple Play physics just around the corner

More information about ATI's long-awaited physics processing is finally trickling into light. ATI has named its GPU accelerated physics processing Asymmetric Physics Processing.

Hardware requirements for Asymmetric Physics Processing include two AMD ATI Radeon based graphics cards and a compatible CrossFire motherboard.  One Radeon may be used as a GPU with an additional Radeon acting as a physics processor.  The requirement for three Radeons to complete physics processing is only a requirement of Triple Play operation.

ATI’s Triple Play physics processing is also supported with two ATI Radeon graphics cards operating in CrossFire with an equal or lesser performing third card dedicated to physics processing. 

Chile Hardware has the full presentation for Asymmetric Physics Processing in English and Spanish.

Asymmetric Physics Processing requires two AMD ATI Radeon graphics cards for baseline processing, the two graphics cards do not need a direct physical link like CrossFire. AMD is also touting the ability to mix and match different ATI Radeon graphics cards to have greater flexibility for users that upgrade their older graphics cards.

At this time it seems AMD chipsets are the only supported platform for Asymmetric physics processing. Supported chipsets include the AMD 580X, ATI CrossFire Xpress 3200 (for Intel) and the upcoming RD790. It is unknown if the CrossFire capable Intel 975X and P965 chipsets will be supported.

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Interesting on paper...
By Axbattler on 1/9/2007 3:09:46 PM , Rating: 2
Now we have to see how well the implementation goes.

I'll be particularly interested in the support and efficiency/performance. What would be required to use the Radeon as a physics processor? How well would a graphic card do the job as a physics processor? What sort of penalty are we looking at when using two cards in GPU mode? Crossfire do not provide twice the performance.. Will we see further penalties (beyond the 'loss' observed on a Crossfire rig)? And if so (I would expect so, but who knows) - how much the penalty? Is it possible to seamlessly switch from the second card from GPU mode to Physics mode?

Lots of questions, but I think that all of those will attribute to the solution's attractiveness.

RE: Interesting on paper...
By qwerty1 on 1/9/2007 5:11:29 PM , Rating: 3
I don't think the penalty of using a gpu as a ppu would be any higher than the Aegia method. After all, they are both separate cards in pci-e slots doing the same thing while not linked to other cards via crossfire or the like. The most likely single penalty that would result is probably in the efficiency of the gpu converted into ppu. Now we just have to see the amount of benefit each type of gpu card provides.

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